Recent News from ACT! for America

Matthew Levitt's book, Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God
Matthew Levitt's book, Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God

Terrorism expert Matthew Levitt writes that an increasing number of U.S. prison inmates have tattoos that are pro-Hezbollah or are in Farsi, the language spoken in Iran. The claim is made in Levitt’s new book, Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God.

“Law enforcement officials across the Southwest are reporting a rise in imprisoned gang members with Farsi tattoos” and some express loyalty to Hezbollah.

His book includes an eye-opening quote from another official: “You could almost pick your city and you would probably have a [Hezbollah] presence.”

Hezbollah’s business relationship with Mexican drug cartels is seen as a driving force behind the phenomenon.

In 2009, Michael Braun, former Chief of Operations for the Drug Enforcement Agency, said that Hezbollah uses “the same criminal weapons smugglers, document traffickers and transportation experts as the drug cartels.”

In April 2010, an individual named Jamal Yousef was apprehended in New York City. During interrogation, he admitted to stealing weapons from Iraq for Hezbollah. Yousef alone knew of a Hezbollah stockpile in Mexico that included 100 M-16 assault rifles, 100 AR-15 rifles, 2500 hand grenades, C4 explosives and anti-tank weapons.

An actual member of Hezbollah was captured in Tijuana in July 2010. His arrest was the smoking gun proof that Hezbollah is investing in building a network in Mexico.

An unnamed senior Mexican military officer confirmed to then-Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC) that Hezbollah was giving explosives training to members of Mexican drug cartels. She wrote a letter to the Department of Homeland Security warning it “might lead to Israel-like car bombings of Mexican/USA border personnel or National Guard units in the border regions.”

Very shortly thereafter, a drug cartel detonated a car bomb for the first time and killed 4 people in Ciudad Juarez. It was described as having “Hezbollah-like sophistication” and a Tucson Police Department reported later said there is a “strong suspicion” that Hezbollah had traded its expertise.

Hezbollah’s presence goes further south than Mexico. The Venezuelan government has been accused of colluding with Hezbollah and Iran for years. It’s long been understood that Hezbollah operates in the tri-border area of Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil.

The Wall Street Journal says that Hezbollah is “forging ideologically promiscuous ties with Colombia’s right-wing paramilitary groups and communist guerillas and digging tunnels for drug cartels on the Mexican-American border—the same kinds of tunnel networks it has spent years perfecting along the geographically similar Lebanese-Israeli border.”

Roger Noriega, former Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, could not be clearer in his urgent warnings:

“If our government and responsible partners in Latin America fail to act, I believe there will be an attack on U.S. personnel, installations or interests in the Americas as soon as Hezbollah operatives believe that they are capable of such an operation without implicating their Iranian sponsors in the crime.”

Noriega said that in 2011. That was two years ago. The threat has only grown since then.

The Clarion Project
Ryan Mauro
October 13, 2013

 

Posted on October 22, 2013 at 7:36 AM

 

 

(KMOV) – Two men training at Fort Leonard Wood are in custody after deputies say they tried to abduct a 12-year-old girl in Pulaski County Friday afternoon.

Mohammed Mahmoud Omar Mefleh, 34, and Antoine Clela, 31, were charged with enticement of a child and harassment.

The victim told police she was playing with a sibling in her yard when Mefleh and Clela approached her several times and tried to lure her into their vehicle. She told officers they kept asking for sexual favors.

The suspects are with a foreign military in a middle eastern country and are part of a training mission at Fort Leonard Wood, just a couple miles from where the attempted abduction took place. 

"There is no diplomatic immunity, they are guests and if they were diplomats it would be different, but they're here on a training mission so we treat them like any other citizen charged with a crime," said Sheriff Ron Long with Pulaski County.

Military officials are not yet commenting on this case although Sheriff Long said they are cooperating with investigation.

Deputies who responded to the scene located the suspects. They were arrested and remain at the Pulaski County Jail on a $200,000 bond.

[source]

 



Local daughter of '83 Beirut bombing victim: 'Keep his memory alive'

'A great sacrifice for peace'

I couldn’t believe my eyes. The barracks building was gone. The four-story building where hundreds of Marines with the Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, lived was gone.

“No freakin’ way, I thought….there was nothing but a mushroom cloud where the barracks building was. It was at that moment I realized the cakewalk was over
.”

— Tim McCluskey, Beirut bombing survivor, writing for the online Marines Blog

Amanda Winter Moore was just 3 1/2 on Oct. 23, 1983. All she remembers of her dad, U.S. Marine Capt. William E. Winter, was running to him for comfort one night as he came home from work after her mother had disciplined her.

Winter, of Athens, was one of 241 American servicemen who lost their lives in the suicide attack on the Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon. Another 128 Americans were wounded in the blast.

It was the deadliest single-day death toll for the United States Marine Corps since the 1945 Battle of Iwo Jima, the largest single-day death toll for the U.S. military since the first day of the Vietnam War’s Tet Offensive, and the deadliest single attack on Americans overseas since World War II.

The bombing was traced to Hezbollah, a militant and political group that originated in Lebanon in 1982. Iranian and Syrian involvement was also suspected.

But when you’re a little girl, hardly out of infancy, those figures and longstanding Middle East hostilities are meaningless.

“I remember sitting on the living room floor with my mother watching TV and all the names of the dead scrolling down,” said Moore. “I remember the funeral. I couldn’t understand if Daddy was in the box, why couldn’t he get out and play with me.”

On Oct. 23, 1983, Moore, her 6-year-old brother, Michael, and her mother, Melia, just 25, awaited the return of their father and husband, 32-year-old William “Bill” Winter, from Lebanon two weeks later to their home on Camp LeJeune at Parris Island, N.C.

Two days after the blast, then editor of The News Courier, Craig Beasley, interviewed the missing Marine’s father, Ellis Winter of Athens, who was still awaiting word on the fate of his only child. The elder Winter described his son, who had completed his paratrooper training while still at Auburn in the Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps, as “kind of gung ho.”

Winter had been in Beirut since May 1983 as part of the Multinational Peacekeeping Force. At 6:22 a.m. that October day a 19-ton Mercedes-Benz truck driven by Iranian national Ismail Ascari passed between two sentry posts, passed through an open vehicle gate in the perimeter of chain-link fence, crashed through a guard shack in front of the building serving as the barracks and crashed into the building’s entry way.

Ascari detonated his explosives, which were later estimated to be equivalent to approximately 9,525 Kg (21,000 pounds) of TNT. The force of the explosion collapsed the four-story building on the site of the old Beirut International Airport.

Winter’s remains were “tentatively” identified on Nov. 4, 1983, almost two weeks after the bombing, Moore said.

“My understanding is that his remains were the second or third to be identified,” said Moore. “His room was right above where the truck detonated. They said, “we think” they are his remains.”

Winters parents asked their daughter-in-law, Melia, who remarried several years later and is now Melia Collier, to bring her children from North Carolina to Athens so they could help raise them.

“Some people have asked why he isn’t buried at Arlington, but my mother had him interred at Athens City Cemetery,” said Moore. “She said it was important for his family to be able to visit his gravesite whenever they wanted.”

Moore, now the single mother of four children, Cary William, 13; Madison, 9; Ainslee, 6, and Everley, 4, said she will take her children to her father’s grave today.

“We were going to go to Camp LeJeune because every year they have a big commemoration,” said Moore, who works three part-time jobs — paramedic for HEMSI Ambulance Service in Madison County, registered nurse at Limestone Correctional Facility and RN at Morgan County Jail.

“I wanted to take my four children there on the 30th anniversary, but we can’t make it,” she said.

Capt. William E. Winter was posthumously promoted to major. His dress uniform and clippings are on permanent exhibit at the Alabama Veterans Museum and Archives on Pryor Street.

“What I would like to say is we must keep their memories alive — these men made a great sacrifice for peace,” Moore said. “But so did their families.”

[Source]

 

Preliminary data suggests that a female suicide bomber conducted the attack on the bus in Volgograd, central Russia, killing six people and injuring 33, according to the Russian Investigative Committee.

“Today at 2:05pm Moscow time [10:05 GMT] in Volgograd inside a bus, as a result of an unknown explosive device going off, a blast happened, leading to casualties,” a national Anti-terrorist Committee representative said in the statement.

Forty passengers were on the bus. At least eight of them are in critical condition. A 20-month-old toddler is among those injured. His state is assessed as moderately severe.

Russia’s Health Ministry indicated that most of the victims in the explosion sustained mine explosive-type wounds, caused by the bus’s paneling and the shattered glass.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has instructed the Emergencies Ministry and the Ministry of Health to provide all the necessary help to the victims of the blast. An Emergencies Ministry plane, with medics and five special medical units on board, has arrived in Volgograd to help treat the injured.
 

A young man named Ilya, an eyewitness of the terror act, who was in a different bus on the same route, described the scene of the blast to RT:

“First I saw a lot of pieces of broken glass scattered all over the driveway [road]… There definitely was an explosion in [the bus] as its windows burst outside sending glass to a considerable distance, but with no fire outbreak… There were a lot of police there and also people who had been just driving by and stopped to help the victims, they were bringing med kits with them. There were people from the emergency service at the scene helping the injured, but I saw a woman sitting inside the bus. She was covered with blood and I couldn’t make out whether she was alive or not. She was just sitting there.”

According to Ilya, lots of students use that bus route, as it stops at Volgograd State University, and there were apparently some students at the scene of the blast. The bus also passes the local Cardio Center, he said, adding that some heart patients might have been there too.

 

Photo from vk.com/club60039978

Photo from vk.com/club60039978

A relative of one of the surviving passengers told Echo of Moscow radio the explosion went off in the middle of the bus aisle. There were a lot of youngsters on the bus at the time of the blast, he said.

Witnesses reported that the front part of the vehicle was heavily damaged, and that the nearby cars had their windows broken.

Bomber identified

The Investigative Committee has identified the woman who was the suicide bomber behind the blast: it's allegedly Naida Asiyalova, from Dagestan.

The preliminary information indicates that “the female suicide bomber recently converted to Islam, and was the wife of a militant leader,” an Investigative Committee representative told the media.

Also, a grenade has been found under the vehicle and it's now being checked whether the explosive is live, a source in the security forces now at the scene told RIA Novosti.

 

Naida Asiyalova's passport scan (image from http://hackinferno.livejournal.com)

Naida Asiyalova's passport scan (image from http://hackinferno.livejournal.com)

According to information obtained by LifeNews from security sources, the suicide bomber, Asiyalova, earlier recruited a young Muscovite, Dmitry Sokolov, who became a skilled bomber respected by Islamist militants. The 22-year-old reportedly fell in love with the female recruiter while studying Arabic in a Moscow university. She then turned him to radical Islam and convinced him to leave home for Makhachkala.

An unconfirmed report cited by the Russian media claimed the 30-year-old Asiyalova had a serious and painful disease.

Sokolov, now known as Abdul Jabbar, is wanted in Dagestan for taking part in two terrorist explosions, in which at least 29 people were injured, the media added.

 

RIA Novosti/Kirill Braga

RIA Novosti/Kirill Braga

Following the blast, local police cordoned off the scene and ordered all movement of minivan buses in Volgograd to be halted. A kilometers-long traffic jam has formed in the area.

Bomb technicians and investigators thoroughly searched the scene. Criminal investigators from Moscow have also been called to Volgograd, according to Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin.

Emergencies Ministry video from the scene:

Earlier, the malfunction of gas equipment inside the bus was listed as one of the possible causes of the blast. However, investigators soon indicated a terrorist act was the preliminary cause.

The transport company which owned the bus said that the vehicle worked on diesel fuel, and there was no gas equipment on board, a statement on the local governor’s website later confirmed.

 

RIA Novosti/Press-service of Russian Emergen

RIA Novosti/Press-service of Russian Emergen

Volgograd, formerly known as Stalingrad, is an important industrial city and the administrative center of Volgograd region. The city spans some 80 kilometers along the Volga River in the South of Russia.

At the present time more than 1 million people live in Volgograd.

 

 

 

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